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Read this book.

I am reading Number...the Language of Science and highly recommend it. I'm only on chapter 3 and it has become my favorite science book I've read thus far.

When I bought it I read enough of the cover to know the principle of the book (how the concept of number evolved from the beginnings of time to the 20th century) but I did not grasp until after the preface that it was written in 1930. I suppose the quote on the cover "This is beyond doubt the most interesting book on the evolution of mathematics which has ever fallen into my hands. - Albert Einstein" should have given me a clue.

Anyway, the date of origin isn't that big a deal when you are looking at the birth of number and number theory but two things have struck me so far. His disregard for binary (the book predates computers, binary got a one paragraph mention about it's use in calculation machines - LOL!) and in chapter three "number lore" there's a mention of Fermat and his infamous margins with the implicit "still to this day has not been solved dun dun dun..."

Otherwise the origin of number words and concepts is so totally fascinating everyone needs to read this book.

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